Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Heart's Day! I was inspired by the holiday to pair one of my favorite poets with a picture of one of my "blue * birds * happiness" quilts. I rather like the result.

A little truth to antidote the typical sappy holiday mush (goodness but I despise shopping for pre-made Valentine's cards).

Gung Hay Fat Choy!

Did I mention today was a full day? Back to school for BJ after a week home, 100s day at school, AND the third grade feast for Chinese New Year! Earlier in the week, they'd made fortune cookies (with fortunes created by the kids -- BJ missed making them but I was able to email in his contributions.) Today, the kids spent the morning cooking meals in family homes, and then they had a delicious feast for lunch to celebrate the Year of the Horse. Very fun!

BJ's group made Chinese Almond Cookies (in the background) and Chinese Marbled Tea Eggs.

100 Days of School

Today was the 100th day of school! BB made a flower with 100 tissue paper petals, and BJ glued 100 Joe's O's cereal pieces to a sheet of cardstock.

And here they are at the parade -- very sweet.

Pop-Pop and Giki Are Here!

Christmas can really start now: my folks have arrived! They came in on Tuesday, coming early especially so that they could attend singing on Wednesday morning. (Always a special time, made even more so when we sang "We Are" with the line about grandfather's dreamings and grandmother's longings; I was all choked up.) We've been having a lovely visit filled with fun times. So nice to have them with us! Here are a few of the memories we've been making:

Third Grade Tradition: Gingerbread!

It's a third grade tradition at our school: The Making Of The Gingerbread Village!

Santa! and Christmas Preparations

We visited Santa!

BB has asked for a guitar (and capo -- thanks to singing on Wednesday mornings when teacher J shares a bit with the kids about how a guitar works) and BJ would like a large LEGO Harry Potter or Star Wars set, or a a robot, or more Pokemon. (Note the OR, not the AND. The parental programming is working.)

Pumpkin Patch and Halloween Preparations

This year, I offered to take the kids to a different pumpkin patch, but they were having none of that! They insisted that we head back to the one we've gone to every year, at a school in the neighboring district -- we've been going there since the Las Madres days, when our LM group had many friends in the neighborhood.

Ren Faire

Hear Ye, Hear Ye! It's Ren Faire Time again!

This year, we met up with our good friends J, M, and J. Fun was had by all! We all definitely have our favorites now, having been so many years in a row. (Though I have to say, it's nice to have graduated past the kids-in-the-wagon stage.) We hit the Fool's Maze first, at BJ's request.

Annual Big Basin Camping Trip

We counted it up, and this year was our sixth year in a row at the tent cabins at Big Basin State Park. Another good time was had by all!

As is our tradition, we spent a day at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. We had a lovely day for it, too.

Fourth of July Fireworks and Fun!

We had a fabulous Fourth of July, full of fireworks, friends, and fun.

We started the day by watching the local parade, which has certainly grown over the past few years but still has a lovely small-town feel. From the folks handing out flags (and the kids that grab them)...

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